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29 April 2010

Paradise Glacier Ice Caves Lost

From the 1930’s through the early 1980’s Paradise Glacier’s ice caves were world famous. Today they are gone and the Big Four Glacier ice caves are more famous, though will mostly melt away this summer of 2015. In 1906 Paradise Glacier was a single glacier that extended down to an elevation of 6000-6200 feet. The image below is from the book The Mountain that was God. In the 1930’s the …

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20 April 2010

Fleming Glacier Acceleration and Retreat, Antarctica

Recent observations indicate that the Fleming Glacier on the Antarctic Peninsula which used to feed the Wordie Ice Shelf is accelerating and thinning even faster(Wendt et al, 2010) This is leading to the production of numerous tabular icebergs from the glacier front as seen below from a 2009 Google Earth image. . A is a rift that is also the ice front toward the upper right. B and C are …

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15 April 2010

North Cascade Glacier 2010 Mass Balance Forecast

Beginning in 2006 the North Cascade Glacier Climate Project began to forecast glacier mass balance from atmospheric circulation index data. To be useful for water resource managers such a forecast must be made early in the spring. This is when snowpack begins melting at elevations below the glaciers and reservoirs can begin to be recharged. A first generation forecasting model that relied on October-March Pacific Decadal Oscillation and El Nino …

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31 December 2009

Anderson Glacier Retreat, Middle section exposed

Anderson Glacier is the headwaters of the Quinault River in the Olympic Mountains of Washington. A century ago the glacier was 2 km long, and a half kilometer wide. Retreat of this glacier in the first half of the 20th century exposed a new alpine lake, as the glacier retreated 1 kilometer. From 1950-1980 the glacier diminished slowly. From 1959 to 1990 the glacier thinned and retreated from the lake …

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23 December 2009

Zemestan Glacier, Afghanistan Retreats

The Wakhan Corridor in Afghanistan is not easy to get to, as a result field study of its glaciers are quite limited. This is where the Global land ice Monitoring System (GLIMS) comes in. GLIMS acquires satellite imagery of glaciated areas, making these images available to researchers and processing them to an extent for inventory purposes. GLIMS is led by Jeff Kargel at the University of Arizona. In the Wakhan …

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27 November 2009

Tasman Glacier Retreat

Update for 2/22/2011-the Tasman Glacier’s thin and weak terminus area, see in the GE image below, in Tasman Lake shed some large icebergs due to the earthquake generating some substantial waves in the lake. The post earthquake image with numerous fresh icebergs is the second below and is from the EPA. No word on the Hooker Glacier in the next valley west, which also calves into an expanding lake or …

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